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best-emerging-bands-artists

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SXSW Presents: Cool Nutz

 Cool Nutz is like a living Portland legend in quite a few different ways. Having been in the hip hop game since the early 90s is one thing, but having started in it and stayed it in a place like the Pacific Northwest is a whole other feat not many can say they've really accomplished. Aside from its hipster kitschiness and bountiful nature, Portland is also known for it's lack of demographic diversity, in race and in its predominant music offerings. That's been steadily changing throughout the years, and Cool Nutz is definitely one to be credited in making Portland hip hop a blip on the international map.

From his first release in 1993 up until now, Cool Nutz (born Terrance Scott) knew exactly what was required to keep his head above water in the game. Not only did seek and succeed at doing his best in the rap game but he's also established himself as an accomplished businessman as well. On top of sharing the stage with other influential rappers like Mac Dre, Wu-Tang Clan, Ice Cube, Bone Thugs N Harmony and more, Cool Nutz directed arising lulls or lows into other profitable endeavors. Having a steady gig hosting The Breakout Radio Show on iHeart Radio, doing "Playlist" with Portland Trailblazers shooting guard CJ McCollum and establishing the Oregon Hip-Hop Festival, Cool Nutz never let's anything stop him or bring him down.

Seeing Cool Nutz's success along with his energy and perseverance is inspiring to Portland's hip-hop and black community. During his live performances, he exudes a pride and confidence that makes him all the more enjoyable to see. Catch his one SXSW on 3.16 at Buffalo Billiards.

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SXSW Presents: Floating Room

 In what is best described as "gray pop," the music Floating Room makes creates a sense of mellow desire; a longing manifested through their use of droned hums and haunting vocality. Floating Room is the musical partnership between Maya Stoner (ex-Sabonis) and Kyle Bates (Drowse, also featuring Stoner), though their partnership expands to much more than what started as bedroom pop recordings. In a romantic sense the couple's chemistry, aside from their collective experimental and artistic capacity, helps make Floating Room what it is. Tenderness isn't feared on either of their ends, and their propensity for support behind the instruments and in front of them is evident 

Sunless, the band's 2016 full-length debut on Good Cheer Records, married deep socio-emotional themes with paralyzing sounds. Stoner and Bates trade off guitar and synth duties as they channel part of makes Sunless (and the way they play together in general) beguiling - its vulnerability. Stoner sings about the transition from a bad relationship to a much better one, touching on abuse of power and misogyny along the way. For most, the subject matter is relatable, giving a welcoming sense to each of the tracks.

The openness presented on the album translates into Floating Room's live performances as well. They'll be touring with Alien Boy (which is led by Sonia Weber, Floating Room's sometimes drummer) and are playing four SXSW dates, so see them as much as you can.

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Morgan Saint Creates Downcast Pop in Video for "YOU," goes to SXSW

Donning an aesthetic drawn from the experimental side of runway fashion and new wave androgyny, the left-field tendencies of Alternative R&B newcomer Morgan Saint are on full-display in the music and video for "YOU." The video sees the singer performing her subdued brand of vibrant and forlorn synthpop amidst an empty stage; creating a barren, yet, intimate atmosphere to match the song's crestfallen tone. Saint will be performing at this year's South by Southwest Festival following the release of her debut EP, 17 Hero. "YOU" can be streamed below. - Alexander Beebe

 

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New Track: "Outnumbered" - The HIRS Collective

Friends. Lovers. Favorites., the first official full-length album from The HIRS Collective, is scheduled for release on April 20 via Get Better Records/SRA Records. An eye-popping array of guests that includes Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace, Garbage's Shirley Manson, and Screaming Females' Marissa Paternoster just to name a few can be found on the forthcoming record. The LP’s closer, “Outnumbered,” issues a warning message aimed at those whom infringe on the rights of trans-women. Along with Thou, HIRS will be supporting Screaming Females at Union Transfer on Thursday, April 5, which is presented by WKDU.

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SAVAK Keep Rock's Flame Burning With Eclectic Sound

Consisting of members of The Obits, Holy Fuck, Nation of Ulysses, and The Cops, SAVAK is a new super-group of sorts that sports an intriguing sound. By blending garage rock rhythms with saxophone flourishes and a presentation rife with hardcore punk energy, SAVAK put forward an indie rock variation that is as noisy as it is hook-laden and expresses an eccentric range of influences. "Reaction" and "Drop the Pieces" from their 2016 album Best of Luck in Future Endeavors can be streamed below. - Alexander Beebe

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